Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Passing Of A Legendary Retriever Field Trialer

Lanse Brown With Sophie
"Lanse" / Alonson C. Brown III just passed. He was a legend unto himself in the sport of retriever field trials. Lanse was inducted in 2011 to the Retriever Field Trial Hall of Fame. His field trial sojourn spanned almost half a century. He was previously married to Dana Thompson Brown (now Istre), who turned pro.

A successful amateur handler trainer and regular National contender, Lanse also judged field trials. He learned to train under Rex Carr, the legendary retriever field trial trainer from Escalon, California, known as the original e-collar man.

Caustic and contrarian, Lanse used to greet each newcomer to Rex's with these warm words: "And what's wrong with YOU?" Between Lanse and Bill Sabbag the psychiatrist from Palo Alto, they tried to convince field trial enthusiasts training at Rex's to believe we were all mental cases, and that's why we were there, to get cured.

Those were the 'good old days', when Bill Sargenti, John Folsom, Warren Grimsby, Frank Baird and later, Jim Dobbs were working for Rex in the yard (not all at the same time, of course). And such illustrious names as Augie and Louise Belmont, Don and Marion Weiss, Judy Weikel Aycock and others, 'hung out' at the former CL-2, (Carr Lab 2) to train. CL-2 has since been renamed by Bill Sargenti (who now owns the grounds) as Billy's Place. At that time I was training under Rex with Trumarc's A.W.O.L. and Reefer's Madness, tent camping and gigging frogs from the ponds that I BBQ'd for dinner (yummy!).

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